How to choose a scope for your AR15 rifle

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How to choose a scope for your AR15 rifle.
You would think choosing a scope for the AR15 rifle would be a cakewalk of an article assignment. Everyone sells a pile of options for the AR platform rifle.

All these available options make this article a little more daunting. Nevertheless, it’s a challenge that will be a flat-out fun time, so let’s get to it.
First up, the assignment is a scope for a rifle to leave out the reflex or red dot style sights, as they are not accurate scopes, sorry Crimson Trace and EOTech.

Now we get to the grit of the story, what do we want this rifle and optic platform to do?
Since it is coyote hunting season here in Utah, that is what we want this particular rifle to do, and the AR15, with some magnification, does that specific job like no other.

The scope will need to be low magnification and lightweight. Low magnification because coyotes seldom stand still doing nothing, so we have to track the target, and we will need as much field of view downrange as we can get, lightweight because hauling that rifle around the sagebrush all day gets heavy.

So, this looks like a job for the 1x -4x power scope, with a 30mm tube if possible. An illuminated reticle, if possible, due to the nocturnal, dusk, and dawn loving critter, and faster sight picture.
Now that all that is said, let us look at what is out there for optics, then we will look at mounts after that.

Two examples that can’t be beat
First up, the Vortex Crossfire II 1x4x24 magnification and objective.
The reticle is the illuminated V bright option, with a 30mm main body tube. Fog-proof, rainproof, and tough as nails, you can’t go wrong here.
The eye relief is four inches, so mount it anywhere it works best; this option is extremely comfortable.

With the scope mounted on an AR rifle, use it as you mean it; Vortex offers the no problems warranty, fix or replace it. You can also check the complete AR-15 scopes review to choose the best scope for your AR-15 rifle.
Next, we have the Burris MTAC 1 – 4 x 24 for magnification power and objective.
30 mm main body tube, eye relief 3.5 – 4 inches, again put it where it works best, and the quickest sight picture acquired.

Now for the best part, the reticle. Illuminated, and that is not all; it is my favorite style of the reticle, the dot in a circle. So, why do I like this reticle best? The process is a massive line and quickly can “ring” your target. The dot is small, so to put the bullet in an exact spot, it’s already centered from the massive ring, just put that tiny dot on the X and pull the trigger.
Built for action and not afraid of anything, this scope is weatherproof and backed by the most excellent warranty in the business. Hell, you can take a Burris scope in after a house fire, and they will replace it, and that transfers to every owner, forever.

Scope Mounting
When we mount this optic to the rifle, there are a few things to consider, mostly due to the charging handle access on the AR15. This rifle is excellent with open and reflex sights, but a full-on scope gets in the way. This industry is filled with genius engineers, so they just made a way to contend with that, easy and no fuss, no mess.

The cantilever scope mount is perfect for this build. The scope sits a bit higher and a little forward of the charging handle. Problem solved. The cantilever mount fits onto the flat top AR upper on the Picatinny rail, snug down the bolts, sight in the reticle, check everything for tightness twice. Use the Wheeler Fat Wrench torque driver, make sure all the mounting bolts and screws are equally tight, so the scope does not get twisted and your accuracy suffers.

Then, on to the hard part, go to the range and spend about 65 bucks on ammo downrange, get that optic printing next to each other on paper, go home, clean everything, put the gun in the safe, cover it with its blankie, then go to sleep.
Next day, if possible, go to the desert and smoke a bunch of coyotes, or if that is not your thing, go shoot up all the targets you can place safely until it’s dark, too cold, or you run out of ammo.
Then do the clean, tuck in, and sleep thing again.

If you have an AR platform rifle and it needs some distance vision, do not hesitate. Mounting the scope is easy, the contents are affordable, most of all, they are entertaining to shoot.

See you in the desert.

Andrew Garfield

Andrew is an avid hunter and outdoorsman. He has years of experience in hunting with expert knowledge in hunting tactics, rifle scopes and all types of hunting gear.

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